Melvin Burgess was born in London in 1954 and was brought up in Sussex and Surrey. Described by The Times as 'a new and powerful talent', he is now regarded as one of the best writers of contemporary children's and teenage literature. Junk won the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize and the Carnegie Medal. It was also shortlisted for the 1998 Whitbread Children's Book of the Year. Four of his novels have been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. His recent novel, Bloodtide, won the Lancashire Children's Book Award. Melvin Burgess writes full time and lives in Manchester.
In a starred review, PW said, "The abundant use of British slang-especially for matters sexual-gives the story an exotic, slightly Austin Powers-like charm." Ages 16-up. (May) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
British guy pals Dino, Ben, and Jonathon think and talk about It-a lot. Each has his own romantic problems. Dino is wrapped around the finger of queen bee Jackie, who won't do the deed. Ben wants out of a secret relationship with his hot but less-than-stable teacher. Jonathon has extended conversations with his member, "Mr. Knobby Knobster," and longs to shag Deborah, a plumpish classmate. Will his friends understand? Adult readers will either recognize themselves in Dino, Ben, and Jonathon or cringe at the thoughts that go through their heads. It pretty much divides on gender lines. For fans of Superbad (starring Michael Cera, Jonah Hill, and Christopher Mintz-Plasse, 2007). Why It Is for Us: This bro-mance starts raunchy and only grows more hilarious. The reader who can make it through the opening scene-a game of "Who would you do?" as in "Who would you do, the homeless lady down the street or.?"-can stomach its frank treatment of adolescent male sexuality. [The hardcover was published in 2004.] Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Gr 10 Up-Three teenaged boys enjoy talking about, thinking about, and joking about sex. Dino finally establishes a relationship with Jackie, the prettiest girl in school, who will allow all sorts of sexual liberties, but draws the line at intercourse. He finds another girl whom he mistakenly thinks he can use for sex while keeping his relationship with Jackie viable. In the meantime, he witnesses his mother passionately involved with a man who is not his father, and must deal with the results of his own treacherous behavior as he watches his parents' marriage fall apart. Ben finds himself steeped in a dilemma of a different sort. His 20-something drama teacher chooses him to be her secret sexual playmate, which he first enjoys but then desperately tries to escape. Jonathon's predicament involves his budding romance with Deborah, an overweight girl whom everyone likes as a friend, but not a girlfriend. He has to decide whether to follow his heart, despite taunting from his peers. Burgess's novel, which retains its original British terminology and sexual slang, is crude, irreverent, and explicit, yet honest and frequently funny. At first, the sexual elements are uncomfortably overwhelming, but Burgess gradually twists the story so that the characters' personal situations become prominent, with casual sex secondary. The seemingly callous male characters become more sympathetic as their personalities, feelings, and problems are unveiled. The female characters are not afforded the same sensitivity. Readers may be drawn in by the intense sexual tone, and find a well-developed story that will spark reflection on the meaning and strength of peer and romantic relationships.-Diane P. Tuccillo, City of Mesa Library, AZ Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
"What's invaluable is the sneak peek we get into how guys' self-obsessed minds work. (And thankfully--beneath the smut--they actually do have feelings.)"--"Seventeen" "" "The funniest young adult book I've read in a long time. Fresh, honest, and totally hilarious."--"Alloy.com" " ""As a card-carrying boy, I appreciate the male P.O.V. of this novel, so kudos to Burgess for exploring a sensitive subject in an honest way."--"Elle Girl " " What's invaluable is the sneak peek we get into how guys' self-obsessed minds work. (And thankfully-- beneath the smut-- they actually do have feelings.)" -- "Seventeen""" " The funniest young adult book I've read in a long time. Fresh, honest, and totally hilarious." -- "Alloy.com"" "" As a card-carrying boy, I appreciate the male P.O.V. of this novel, so kudos to Burgess for exploring a sensitive subject in an honest way." -- "Elle Girl "